Dear New Yorker,
In 2008, the NYC Council passed the New York City Climate Protection Act to create a timetable for reducing greenhouse gas emissions throughout the five boroughs.
This past week we took another important step toward helping our city prepare for climate change with the passage of Proposed Int. No. 834-A.
Introduced by Council Member James Gennaro, Proposed Int. No. 834-A expands and institutionalizes the work of two bodies advising the City on the threats of global warming and how best to plan and prepare for addressing those threats: the New York City Panel on Climate Change and a Task Force of government agencies and partners from the energy, telecommunications, health and other private sectors in charge of recommending how the City should adapt to more frequent storms and heat waves.
Specifically, Proposed Int. No. 834-A requires the Panel's scientists to:
- meet at least twice a year to review the latest climate change data;
- develop strategies for helping the City deal with rising sea levels, extreme heat and other projected impacts that the Panel has determined could result from climate change; and
- update their projections every three years using the most recent climate change data available.
Representatives of the Task Force, including city, state and federal agencies, will then develop plans and policies based on the Panel's recommendations to help the City adapt to the changing climate.
To ensure that the public is adequately informed, the Mayor's Office will disseminate the findings of the Panel and the Task Force. They will also develop a communications strategy to involve non-governmental and community-based organizations in the outreach and work of the Panel and Task Force.
We want to thank all of our colleagues for their support passing this important piece of legislation. Special thanks as well to all of the advocates who've been working with us to address climate change and the impact of global warming on our city.
When signed into law by Mayor Bloomberg, Proposed Int. No. 834-A will be the first law from any state or local government in the country to create an institutional government mechanism for assessing the latest climate change science and planning and implementing adaptive strategies for the impacts of climate change.
Thanks so much and enjoy the rest of your summer!
Christine C. Quinn
James F. Gennaro
Chair, Environmental Protection Committee
Lead Sponsor, Proposed Int. No. 834-A